The EEA and Norway Grants draw on the expertise of Transparency International in identifying and addressing corruption risks in the implementation of the grant schemes.
In July 2011, Transparency International (TI) and the EEA and Norway Grants entered into a three-year agreement to draw on TI's experience and address corruption risks in the implementation of the grant schemes.
Founded in 1993, Transparency International is a global network that brings together government, civil society and businesses to promote transparency and fight corruption. While all beneficiary countries have committed to applying the highest degree of transparency and accountability in the implementation of the grants, corruption remains an obstacle to achieving much needed progress in several beneficiary countries. TI publishes an annual 'International Corruption Perceptions Index' which ranks countries in terms of perceptions of the level of public sector-corruption. In the 2013 index, the 16 beneficiary states ranked from 28 (Estonia) to 80 (Greece) in the world.
What isTI doing?
- Assess the overall integrity in the beneficiary countries: this will be a key information source for assessing the corruption risks within relevant sectors and institutions in the countries.
- Develop a methodology for risk assessment affecting the Grants which can be applied to all beneficiary countries.
- Provide information about existing tools and solutions to address corruption risks in management, including procurement, which is a high-risk area for corrupt practices.
- Conduct pilot projects for Integrity Pacts, a tool aimed at preventing corruption in public contracting.
- Contribute to annual seminars on transparency and good governance in the EEA and Norway Grants
The risk assessments by TI form the basis for the donor countries' decisions on control and audit measures, and ensure that monitoring and control measures are directed at high-risk programmes and countries. The analyses also make the beneficiary countries more aware of the strengths and weaknesses of their institutions, which may have positive effects on administration in the beneficiary countries over and above that of administering the Grants.
Transparency and control in the Grants
The successes that have been achieved by the Grants would not have been so marked were it not for the existence of properly functioning control systems. The EEA and Norway Grants are contributions from public resources in the donor countries, with co-financing from the beneficiary countries. Mechanisms are in place to ensure that all funding is safeguarded and used in line with rules and regulations set out for the grants. Zero tolerance to corruption, graft and mismanagement has always been a guiding principle for the Grants.